Recruiting never stops, and if you take a day off, you fall behind. Join us every night for a daily recap of Ohio State recruiting news, insight on what’s happening behind the scenes, and for a glimpse at what’s coming next.
Ohio State tight end target checks in on Notre Dame, Wisconsin
There is no doubt that the Buckeyes are looking to add at least one – and maybe two – tight ends to their 2018 recruiting class. The top target, as we’ve said for months and will continue to say until he makes a college decision, is Lindenhurst (N.Y.) tight end Jeremy Ruckert.
This weekend, the 6-foot-5, 230-pound Ruckert made two college visits, including a stop at Notre Dame that the country’s second-ranked player at his position called “unforgettable.”
— Jeremy Ruckert (@Jeremy_Ruckert1) March 9, 2017
Notre Dame and Penn State have been proverbial thorns in the side of the Buckeyes in recent years as they’ve chased tight ends. The Irish landed two of the country’s best in 2017 (Texas’ Brock Wright and Illinois’ Cole Kmet, ranked No. 2 and No. 3 in that class) and there had been – at least early in the process – a chance that they wouldn’t sign one in 2018.
Perhaps the chance at a player like Ruckert is something you don’t pass up regardless of your roster makeup. Ruckert doesn’t speak much about his recruitment and has not made any kind of statement other than what he released on Twitter about the visit to South Bend, but it’s something to watch. He also visited Wisconsin.
— Jeremy Ruckert (@Jeremy_Ruckert1) March 11, 2017
Ohio State remains the 247Sports.com “crystal ball” favorite for Ruckert.
Speaking of tight ends, the country’s third-ranked prospect at the position also continues to say he’s thinking about the Buckeyes.
Here’s a brief update on Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas) 4-star tight end Brevin Jordan from SBNation.com’s Bud Elliott and Jason Kirk:
At The Opening’s Los Angeles camp, he listed Miami and Michigan “and UCLA for sure” as three schools he’d definitely put on a top list, were he to make one, with Ohio State and Georgia two others he’s “really looking into.”
The Las Vegas native cites Miami as “Tight End U” and says he wants to visit the Wolverines even though “it’s cold,” since he’d have to get used to playing in any weather if he were to eventually be drafted by “Buffalo or Cleveland.”
The Buckeyes got involved late with Jordan, who is extremely close with 4-star dual-threat quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson. The pair have been linked as a “package” deal for months, and it’s unlikely that would come to fruition at Ohio State.
Noah Cain sets first Ohio State visit date
Just about one week after landing a scholarship offer from the Buckeyes, the country’s top-ranked 2019 running back has a visit set to Ohio State.
“I’ll be up there April 8,” IMG Academy standout Noah Cain told Land of 10. “I’m going up there with my dad.”
Cain told us last week that one of the reasons he was excited for the Ohio State offer was because of how Tony Alford and the Buckeyes create well-rounded running backs.
“I like the way they develop running backs,” he said. “Complete running backs.”
Now with his first trip to Columbus set, the fifth-ranked prospect in the 2019 recruiting class will be looking at a more comprehensive view of the Buckeyes program.
“I’m excited to see the atmosphere of the campus,” he said. “That and just the vibe I get from the coaches.”
California cornerback a top priority for Jaiden Woodbey
Ohio State commitment Jaiden Woodbey has been working hard on the West Coast to try and get some attention for guys he’d like to line up with in Columbus. Last week, we met wide receiver Chase Williams, with whom Woodbey has been chatting, and now we’ll introduce defensive back Isaac Taylor-Stuart, the country’s fourth-ranked cornerback in the 2018 class.
The Buckeyes have not yet spent much time reaching out to Taylor-Stuart, but Woodbey definitely has.
“I like Ohio State,” Taylor-Stuart told Land of 10. “It’s a winning program, but I’ve not really heard from them.”
So what has his friend, Woodbey, been telling him? Basically, he wants Taylor-Stuart in Columbus.
“Jaiden and me, we’re good homies,” Taylor-Stuart said. “He wants me to go to Ohio State with him. He wants more than just one California friend to go to Ohio state with him. He knows I’m the best cornerback and I know he’s the best safety in our class. So he’s trying to start a powerful class.”
I guess it’s up to Ohio State to decide if they’d like to chase the 6-foot-2, 187-pound San Diego prospect.
As we head into the spring recruiting period, we’re bound to see a lot of players narrowing down their college lists in the hopes of making informed and final decisions. This week, there were a handful of players who announced their shortened list and included the Buckeyes.
The first and perhaps most relevant to note is that of 4-star defensive back Asante Samuel, Jr.
— Asante Samuel Ⓜ️ (@godschild3_) March 9, 2017
The Fort Lauderdale star will need to make a trip to Ohio State soon for the Buckeyes to have a real chance here, as Florida State currently leads.
Recently offered cornerback Jaycee Horn, the son of former New Orleans Saints star Joe Horn, has Ohio State in his top 15.
— Jaycee Horn (@jayceehorn_10) March 11, 2017
Horn visited Ohio State when he wast just 10, a guest of then-Buckeye defensive end Cameron Heyward. His brother played alongside Bradley Roby in high school. He’s one of the country’s fastest-rising prospects.
Charlotte’s Dyami Brown, a 4-star athlete at West Mecklenburg High School, also has the Buckeyes in his top group of five (or six, whatever).
1. North Carolina
2. Virginia tech
3. Ohio state
4. Michigan / Louisville
— Dyami Brown (@deuce2_) March 10, 2017
Last but not least is Tampa’s Jermaine Eskridge, a former Kentucky commitment, then a former South Florida commitment, who at one point had Ohio State in his top three schools a day before verbaling to the Bulls last summer. Now he has the Buckeyes in his top seven.
— giw__1? (@Iam_Jermaine4) March 9, 2017
Eskridge is the country’s seventh-ranked athlete, and despite Ohio State staying consistently on his list there’s not much to see at this point between him and the Buckeyes.